Winter Citrus

Curated by Machel Ross
Directed by Sekai Abeni & Devin T. Mays
Director of Photography, Devin T. Mays
Performed by Sekai Abeni
Conceptualized by Sekai Abeni & Devin T. Mays

May 5  & 6 from 7PM – 9PM ET
Ars Nova | 511 West 54th Street

In Person Tix: $10
Ticket includes one
complimentary beverage

Winter Citrus is a 15 minute film and installation that asks how we immerse ourselves in isolation, solitude, love, prayer and ritual. First of a four part installment, Winter Citrus begins in deep winter.

Our protagonists guide us through reinvigorated ritual, familial wandering, ancestral recollections and at times self musings. A moment of togethered isolation, this film’s installation offers the audience the intimacy of film manipulation and theatrical immersion.

Machel Ross is a Dominican American director and creative collaborator based in NYC, who specializes in the development of new work and aesthetic world building. Regardless of medium, she’s invested in generating rigorous images, in support of framing stories to their fullest potential. She’s developed work with Aziza Barnes (NANA), Daniella De Jesús (Mambo Sauce), PigPen Theatre Company (Phantom Folktales), Ellen Winter (This House Is your Home), and directed the world premiere of Jeremy O. Harris’ Black Exhibition at The Bushwick Starr. She’s worked as an associate for Lileana Blain Cruz (Marys Seacole, The House that Will not Stand), Drew McOnie (King Kong), Lila Neugebauer (Mrs. Murray’s Menagerie, The Antipodes, The Wolves) and Annie Baker. Machel is a 2020-2022 WP Directing Fellow, a 2020 Sundance Theater Lab fellow, and a 2019 grant recipient of the Women’s Fund for Film, TV and Theatre for her short film Signs He Made at Home. BFA-NYU Playwrights Horizons Theater School.

Sekai Abeni, a native of Oregon, is a recent graduate of The Juilliard School with her B.F.A in Acting. Sekai was most recently seen in Agnes Borinsky A Song of Songs directed by Machel Ross at The Bushwick Starr. Sekai can be seen in the forthcoming Amazon/Plan B/Legendary series Paper Girls. Her performance art work Blues Blood Black Future, in collaboration with jazz musician Immanuel Wilkins, premiered last year at The Roulette Center. Sekai has worked as Creative Director to musicians Immanuel Wilkins (NPR Tiny Desk) Softee (The SoftStream). She was in the Sundance Theater Lab and Williamstown Theater Festival workshops of Aziza Barnes’ Nana. She appeared in Garage Magazine’s A Cake Walk, directed by Miranda Haymon. Sekai apprenticed at New York Stage & Film/Powerhouse Theater, and was a Young Arts silver medalist. 

Devin T. Mays (b. Detroit, MI) holds a B.B.A in International Business and Marketing from Howard University. After receiving his degree, he worked in advertising developing brand strategies and commercials for the better part of a decade. He returned to school to pursue an M.F.A in studio practice from The University of Chicago. There, he developed an interdisciplinary practice he often refers to as an exercise in the infinite, a practice-in-participation, a practice-in-practice. Since then, he has exhibited at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago; Malmö Konstmuseum; The Driehaus Museum; Museum of Contemporary Photography; Lowe Art Museum, University of Florida; Nahmad Projects, London; DePaul Art Museum, Chicago; Regards Chicago and The Gray Center among others. His work has been published in ArtForum, The Portable Gray Journal, NewCity Chicago and White Columns New York.